Rick Scott's Budget is a Political Mess

Categories: Politicks
rickscottblue.jpg
Rick Scott introduced his budget this Monday to cheers at a Tea Party event inside a Eustis, Florida, church. Back in the reality of Tallahassee, though, the new governor's plans haven't been greeted with much enthusiasm. Even Republican lawmakers aren't sure it's a workable budget. Scott is facing criticism that he's broken campaign promises, isn't forthcoming with details, and that some of his proposals could have serious negative effects on the state. In short, Rick Scott has only been in office for a month, and he's already facing a political nightmare. Then again, the fact that he's only been in any elected office for a month might be part of the problem.

The problems with and criticism of Scott's budget are almost too much to whittle down into a single blog post, so lets just go through some of the bigger problems in bullet point form.

  • Scott wants to redirect "$600 million worth of local-government tax money dedicated to health care... into the state's general-revenue pot of money," which would mean local hospitals would have to fight harder for funding, and large counties like Miami-Dade could be particularly screwed.
  • Scott promised his budget wouldn't result in cuts to education, but he lied.
  • In fact, Scott wants to cut per-pupil spending in public schools by $300 or more, which could mean "layoffs and steep cuts in transportation, art, music, athletics and extracurricular activities."
  • The budget would cut $340 million from funding for universities and colleges, including cuts to career and vocational training, though his motto is to get Florida back to work.
  • Some say the cuts to education could "devastate schools." 
  • In a much heralded piece of legislation last year, Tallahassee finally decided to crack down on South Florida's growing "pill mill" problem. One of the highlights of the new laws was the creation of a prescription monitoring system, like those in most other states. Scott already wants to kill it. "Without this important program Florida will take a step back ten years or more into the past," Republican State Sen. Mike Fasano has said.
  • Four South Florida parks could be closed as a result of budget cuts.
  • The overall response in Tallahassee is that lawmakers on both sides don't think that Scott's plan is workable, and they are disappointed he is slow in providing more details.

That's just a small sampling. Feel free to ad your own in the comments.

A quick review of the articles we link to show that even Republican lawmakers are wary of Scott's proposals. Few expect the budget to pass as proposed. Yet, there is some indication that Scott may try to co-opt the power of the Tea Party to threaten them into agreeing.

From The Herald-Tribune:
Early indicators are that lawmakers will not go as far as Scott. But at the debate's outset, Scott has put GOP leaders at risk of alienating a key element of their party -- the rising Tea Party movement -- if they reject his austere spending plan.

By announcing his budget at a Tea Party rally in Central Florida, he has made the passage of his budget a political litmus test for conservatives in Tallahassee.

He subtly made the point at a dinner with state Senate leaders at the governor's mansion on Monday night after presenting the budget earlier in the day at Eustis.
Though, the fact that even Republicans are balking at some parts of Scott's budget isn't surprising. Scott is a political neophyte, and, remember, thanks in part to shady budgeting tricks, the company he previously ran was forced to pay the biggest amount of fines for Medicare fraud in U.S. history.

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44 comments
Florida Resident
Florida Resident

Not to talk about most illegal immigrants or the ones living in Miami dont pay any taxes. The simply collect from the workers and get paid cash... And i am a fist generation immigrant who is commenting on this.

Florida Resident
Florida Resident

What a one sided, brainless article by Kyle. Mr. Kyle, if you go to a grocery store and ask for a pack of gum and if you do not have the money what happens? Do you endup getting what you CAN NOT afford and dont have the money for?For once we get a politician who is trying to balance a budget without getting into more dept and look at all the comments. All of you who has written negative comments never owned a business (At least a successfull one which is in the balck) never had to do a budget. Sadly you guys reproduce much greater numbers than us....

reversechapter
reversechapter

This article is just a list of some items in Scott's proposed budget, along with a bunch of unsupported derisive comments. Did you make a list of acceptable budget cuts elsewhere, then accidentally edit out that paragraph? Without that information, this is a miserable "mess" of a blog post. Even if you separately dedicate an entire article to this vital counterpoint, you are still failing. This short post attempts to ridicule Scott without the slightest suggestion that you understand the importance of reducing the budget deficit. Reading this article, you'd think that all the Governor has to do is list all the "neat stuff" he can think about buying, and that his resources are limitless.

Most of the critical comments I see on Facebook "Causes" sites from people claiming to be teachers are alarming because of the horrible sentence structure and multiple spelling errors. Even worse than that, I am seeing some astonishing gaps in logic from those sculpting the minds of our young people; many appear to be suffering from apparent mental illness. A disturbing number of them start off with a "Hitler" reference or a thinly veiled appeal for the murder of a political opponent. Having teachers who are unable to write, spell, and argue logically doesn't make me feel good about fighting against education cuts. That's like saying you want to save the job of a firefighting pyromaniac.

Kluve04
Kluve04

I have an idea!!! Government always trying to cut here and there, but what about the one place they haven't suggested??? Their INCOME!!! And these unnecessary job titles! Every day American businesses are shutting down and people are losing jobs. If the people have to lose jobs because of the mess we are in, then why can't government take a pay cut? It's our fault for voting them into the seat, but it's their fault for making the stupid decisions.

Flastylist
Flastylist

What happened of Lets Get to work?I think we are not going to work...

Edfishwalsh
Edfishwalsh

Where do they get the potential ridership numbers from for the future high speed rail? Rick Scott doesn't Know about the economy of Florida. The workers will not use it that much, residents may use it to go on day trips, but the true patrons will be tourists! the tourists Who bring Cash money from out of the country to spend in Florida as they have in the past The train will be the exciting new thing to see in Florida. I cannot believe that Rick Scott can kill such an important public works project so he can showboat at our expense. Thanks Rick!! Don't forget to give your friends unbelievable tax breaks so they can take you out for extravagant dinners and opera with our tax money!someone who is hopeful that we can still do it

Maudsdr
Maudsdr

we don't need a high speed rail when the deficet is killing us. grow up and learn to tighten your belt like the rest of us.

Dr. Bob Lawrence
Dr. Bob Lawrence

Thank God Rick Scott is a political neophyte, to quote your article, the experienced pliticians have moved us steadily toward banruptcy and are losing the support of Floridians. Scott is taking on the establishment (although the article exagerates because many Republicans in Tallahassee support what he is doing) and the teacher's unions, etc. Quality of teaching can only improve once it works on a free market basis.

John426
John426

Florida has been in decline since 1979. Massive waves of illegal and legal un-educated migrants have flowed into Florida from all directions. Those of us working and living here have to carry this dead weight. Most cannot survive here without assistance from various progressive give aways that only encourage dependancy and more to come. We have enough problems with our native Negro population.

Scott is only doing what is logical. I am flat out done supporting others. Get a lid on immigration and start shutting down all the give aways. Hopefully they will go suck on some other tit.Charger John

Robertgsimon
Robertgsimon

intelligent+ reasonably intelligent Floridians could not have voted for Rick Scott the Scumbag who repeatedly ripped off Medicare + took 5th Amendment 75 times .. hahaha Tragically millions of ancient dumb asses of our Sunshine State decided to push this crook on the throne.. and yes, they more then likely will enjoy his phony kingdom for yers to come.

Rmello8
Rmello8

how do we stop rick scott ? this state has been in decline since 1998 (at least) yea thanks jeb !they (the rebplicans) can have a fancy court house in thallassee but we cant afford food !

dennam
dennam

They created the Lottery under the premise that it would improve our schools. It hasn't done that much because the money was wasted by technocratic red tape. The stimulus money to hire new teachers was used not to hire new teacher but to give pay raises to the ones that were already employed. Saving jobs shouldn't include pay raises. Point being, all of the saving measures and increased revenue mean nothing if we don't start spending wisely in ways that will create more returns.

Geshoppoo
Geshoppoo

Here is an open question: If he could cut state spending to zero, what would that save us?

Native
Native

Rick Scott' goal should be to create jobs. Florida already has one of the lowest corporate tax rates in the nation, so lowering the rate even more will do little if anything. One thing Florida could do is develop it's ports and rail systems to take advantage of the newly widened Panama Canal.

Making Florida's education system one of the best in the nation should be another goal. What business wants to relocate to a state that is last in education?What family wants to relocate to a state that is first in "pill mills"?

Rick Scott may be a liar and a sack of shit, but gosh darn he is the governor of Florida, and he should do better for Florida or just get the he'll out of the way.

Max
Max

Kyle, excellently written. I moved overseas last year and have been following Florida politics much closer from abroad for some reason. This budget is a joke... it shows that Rick Scott has removed himself (and the tea party) from the realm of reality.

The contextual placement of his supposed movement is equally enlightening. Obama wants to return to the height of American competitiveness and these teabaggers seem to be doing everything possible to undermine this. Reducing public spending on education (primary and uni) is a horrid step in the backwards direction. Keep em dumb, in debt, and addicted to pain pills... maybe they wont notice that we are raping them from the back.

BSF
BSF

It's about time that the people of this state realize the destruction they elected to incite in November! That's what happens when people go to the ballot box and vote one party down the whole ballot without looking at the candidates individually! We elected a grade-A crook! If you voted for him, then don't complain about any cut that will directly affect your life. Just sit back and wait until 2014...even though this stupid state will probably elect him again!

Sueqtwo
Sueqtwo

Good luck with this clown Florida I'M OUTTA HERE!Giong where the weather suits my ideology.ST. Stephen

Albink
Albink

As a retired teacher who is already on the verge of poverty, watching my cost of living increase evaporate and my health insurance subsidy disappear, I am facing poverty and no health insurance. Scott found a unique way to legally eliminate large numbers of older people while lining his own office's pockets by more than doubling his office budget.

Herby Garcia
Herby Garcia

Who gives a flying fuck about the tea party? They are only a very small percentage of the population. And the Tea Party is an even smaller part of the intelligent population. If this guys budget gets passed (which it won't) the intelligent population will get even smaller.

Richard Booze
Richard Booze

Bravo, Rick Scott!

Cut government down to absolutely essential services.

Florida state, county and city governments are operating in the red and near bankruptcy. With senseless waste, corruption and monster pension expenses looming, the problem is a growing malignant cancer.

We need to learn lessons from states where taxes went rampant. All services are coming to a screeching halt as they run out of money. California, New York and New Jersey (and many other states).

The more liberal programs, the greater the overall suffering and lack of services in essential law enforcement and fire departments.

The bottom line is, If you don't have it, don't spend it. Pure common sense.

Thanks to Scott for at least trying to stop the senseless bleeding.

Nedal
Nedal

I personally would like to see the New Times propose a budget that they think is best?

Superwoman0001
Superwoman0001

Well maybe that problem would be solvedif the path to citizenship was made easier. I want them to pay their fair share of taxes to, but you seem to be overlooking that it is the surrounding business and corporations that are hiring them.

Superwoman0001
Superwoman0001

And Rick did not run a successful business his company had to pay one of the biggest fines in history for Medicaid/Medicare fraud. You elected a crook too office. What persons pleads the 5th 75 times. Oh and that’s fact do your research

Superwoman0001
Superwoman0001

You are right this is just a list of some of the things he proposes, and if the people commenting on here would read everything he propose they would be shocked. He is slashing money out of the school district the department of children and family (and they have been stretched thin for years), but hey who cares about abuse and neglected kids. Evidently he does not. There is nothing in his bill that suggest how he is going to grow jobs, in fact he is eliminating them but he wants an additional 800 million to hire more staff in his personal offices. This dude is full of crap, and a liar.

Too True
Too True

Yea, Florida doesn't need to invest in infrastructure especially during a recession. Who needs 24,000 jobs? Florida certainly now has all the roads it will ever need. No new growth will ever happen here again.

Hey instead of passing on $2.5 billion that will now go to benefit another state, let's use it to blow up another foreign rock pile a few more dozen times. That loud noise you hear, the one behind the tea bag pinheads... that's China and India and Brazil laughing all the way to the bank.

Long after our dear governor and his ego are gone, we will be stuck living with his short sightedness.

Wayne
Wayne

I was just reading this blog and was not going to reply until I read what John426 had to say about the Negro population. Well John I am one of those Negroes that you refer to. I just retired after 32 years from the Miami Dade Fire Dept. and I voted against this gangsta governor of ours. John, I think that you are a Racist Bastard who is probably a member of the now defunct KKK. This is the only way that you feel you and people like you can get ahead is by belittling others. You and those like you can take this governor of ours and shove him up your butts. You racist pig! I know this will not get published, but I just had to vent my frustrastions with the attitude of John426. I feel much better now!

rimak
rimak

STUPID DOUBLE IDIOT,WHITE TRASH RACIST SOB ,CAN'T YOU COMMENT WITHOUT MAKING RACIAL COMMENT,EVERYONE IS SUCKING STARTING WITH THE CUBANS,SO

JULIO
JULIO

You my friend John426 are a racist! Thank you very much for your racist comment. Maybe you can join Richard Booze & BOOZE it up while we fall to THIRD WORLD STATUS.

Daniel
Daniel

Maybe we should start by not letting ignorants who can't spell and use proper grammar try to tell us how OUR tax dollars are spent in here? Bunch of common beggars wanting more art and music classes while students can't read and write. Bravo geniuses!

Julio
Julio

Richard Booze, Do you realize that Rick Scott spend 72 million in the election to be Governor of Florida. My opinion is that is the same as vote buying that is supposed to be illegal. But hold & behold the Supreme Court of this nation gave Corporations as much rights as CITIZENS of this country. I don't see that anywhere in the Constitution. Who does the fighting in wars to keep this country FREE? Why would Rick Scott want to be Governor of Florida? Maybe to overturn the pill law that both REPUBLICANS & Democrats are for. Do you think that maybe that is going to benefit his medical businesses? Do you also know that Rick Scott medical & health companies where fine in the 100 of millions for MEDICARE FRAUD. If you don't know about it is very easy to research it YOURSELF! Don't take FOX CHANNEL word on anything. So essentially Scott become GOVERNOR of Florida by making Floridians pay for his election. You wonder why the Republican party was not for Scott until he ousted the selected Party favorite? Like I say Richard, stop drinking the BOOZE!

Julio
Julio

Well my friend Richard Booze must be on BOOZE! Myself & my families came from & graduated from very good public school system & also College in New York. Education is an essential part of the economic, cultural & art in this country. I would suggest to you that maybe if you where not attacking countries that did nothing to our country. Spending 100 of billions & building armaments in the trillions. All of this money is full of graft & stealing by the Corporations that control the armaments game in this country. What about the billions that we give away in all kinds of armaments to foreign countries. Examples many countries in the middle east on both the Israeli & Arab sides. How about the foreign aid going to the billions on many countries in the world. Education is the most important resource this country has. It is important because of economic expansion in this country & competion in this country. Because of these Liberal Programs the biggest expansion in economic, military, & intellectual that happen in this country. I am talking about the time after WW2. This country was at its best during those times. Why because of your so called Liberal programs. I would say that the reason we became such of great nation is because of the many Liberal programs that started after WW2. The bottom line my friend Richard is that probably you don't know what you are talking about & just repeating everything you see at FOX channel. My advise to you is get off the KOOL AID. Better yet get of the BOOZE!

Illusive Man
Illusive Man

Yep let's cut food safety.Let's scale back air and water quality standards.Let's cut back on educating and let our younger generations grow up dumb and jobless.Cut Cut Cut until you are blue in the face.In the end there will still be no jobs.

Jug322
Jug322

Nedal...YOU propose a budget that would work & not increase the unemployment in this state. YOU my friend are clueless.

Kyle Münzenrieder
Kyle Münzenrieder

Yes, because the basic idea of the press is that all papers reporting on criticism of a public officials ought to be able to do a better job than that public official or just turn a blind eye.

delzell56
delzell56

gov rick scott is the most evil human being to ever enter fla politics.he wants to eliminate the poor and sick people of this state -but the sad thing is-he will be successful. the upper middle class (the rich) and the wealthy will applaud him. this is the republicans plan to balance the budget. they will make him the most decorated gov. of all time. millions of children will die for THE PURPOSE and nobody will do anything to stop him-in fact they will be delighted in THE NEW REFORM. oh, what a savior-they will say,he stopped welfare,food stamps, social security, and retirement benifits along with any and all programs for the under priviledged poor people in this state. he will be the SHINING STAR FOR NEW REFORM and will carry on to greater and better things within the federal government. romney &scott-what a marriage in hell. what a wonderful time for the wealthy Or so they think........

Daniel
Daniel

Common beggar illiterate welfare children, when confronted with facts call others racist to try to hide their own incompetence. Pathetic here Julio. Don't like our elected Governor? Move on over to Mexico then boy. Bravo to Gov Scott! Chop out all the waste and lets cut welfare too.First, lets send all the illegal ciminals packing! They are nothing but a drain on hard working Americans. No medicaid, no food stamps, no Drivers Licenses no nothing for illegals! Keep up the good work Gov, I,m proud of you!

wtf
wtf

lets just get rid of education all together n put every tax dollar we pay towards wars. besides it really doesn't matter how much education u have in the battle feilds....

K.J.
K.J.

What's an "ignorant"? Do you mean an "ignoramus"...or, even better, an "imbecile"?

(Oh, fie on those pesky parts of speech like nouns and adjectives -- all of which have so little to do with "proper grammar.")

Pot. Kettle. Black.

Cut Til It Bleeds
Cut Til It Bleeds

You graduated from college? A very good public education system? Your grammar is atrocious. Looks like your education wasn't as good as you thought it was.

Nedal
Nedal

Turn a blind eye, no. But rather, if you are against certain cuts, tell the world how you would keep programs at a sustainable pace. Is that asking too much?

The truth of the matter is that spending is out of control. On a national level, we saw what Bush's spending did to us, yet we want to continue down the same path? or even spend more?

For instance, education. We talk about pupil spending, yet the money is distributed per pupil, rather per district. If we had a voucher system and gave each student X amount of dollars per year, and they got to choose the school they go to, you would quickly see efficient spending and competition for students to attend a school. The Spend it or lose it policy has failed us and our children for many years now and its time to stop it, I just hope Scott will have the cojones to do such a thing. I held my breath when I voted for him because that ballot stunk, I hope he can change my mind.

rimak
rimak

IF YOUR STUPID CROOK EVIL WHO CERTAINLY WILL BURN IN HELL WANTS TO HELP I HAVE SOME SUGGESTIONS,HEY STUPID RICK HOW ABOUT CUTTING MEDICARE FOR THE ABUELOS AND ABUELAS IN MIAMI,ALSO ELIMINATING THE GIVE OUT ,I MEAN THE CHECKS THEY GETTING WITHOUT EVER WORKED IN THIS COUNTRY,CHECKING THE HANDICAPS DECAL WHICH 8 IN 10 PEOPLE HAVE HERE IN MIAMI,MIAMI IS ALSO INFECTED WITH FOOD STAMP CARDS ,HOW ABOUT CONTROLLING THESE PARASITES SUCKING OUR BLOOD,,PUTTING MORE INVESTIGATORS OUT THERE TO CHECK WHO' S GETTING WHAT IN HOW THEY USING TAX PAYERS MONEY. COME TO MY SEDANOS SUPERMARKET IN FLAGLER, YOU GOT SOME PEOPLE STANDING THERE AND ASKING SHOPPERS GIVE ME SOME CASH I LET YOU BORROW MY FOOD STAMP CARD,WHY AREN' T THE INSPECTOR GENERAL IS CREATING A SPECIAL UNIT TO FIGHT THIS ,THEY WILL SAVE LOT OF MONEY , I WORKED HARD I DON' T EVEN LIKE TO GO SHOPPING BECAUSE OF THE WAY THESE PEOPLE ABUSE THE SYSTEM,SO IF YOU CAN PASS THIS MESSAGE TO RICK THE DEVIL I WOULD APPRECIATE IT.

wtf
wtf

we are begining to learn who the prick scott supporters really are.. uneducated arian nation white trailer park trash... dont worry soon the middle class will be moving into your neighborhoods too after the budget cuts n we could all be trailor park trash while the billionaires get richer.. duhhh

Julio
Julio

The problem with your proposal NEDAL is that the voucher program is flawed. There are not enough private school places for students. You advocate that private schools end up as overcrowded as public schools? What kind of teachers would be teaching in private schools? Not every teacher in private schools have passed the accreditation of public school teachers. Private school teachers are less paid. So if they twice as many students would they be able to teach the same or maybe they would insist on getting better pay. Private schools also could chose the students they want because they can do that. They are private. So I guess if you have a lot of money, where would the rich parents would send their rich kids to the exclusive schools that they desire. If every kid would be adsorb by private schools would that destroy the public school system? What about the kids that cant transfer end up in a failed public school system because of lack of resources. I guess you want America to be like most third world countries! Why not improve your public school system. It has been shown that they can improve system without vouchers with FCAT & improved teaching. So where are you coming from?

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